Good friends and bad seeds.

Anyone who has studied a second language in school would surely remember their teacher’s frequent warnings against one of the most common pitfalls in language learning: false cognates. These are words that look and sound similar in both languages -they may even share the same etymology-, but have different meanings. For example, in English, the […]

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The Challenge of Translating Medical Notes


Going to see a doctor due to an injury or illness is a common practice that takes place every day around the world. After diagnosing the patient, the doctor prepares a handwritten note so the patient may purchase a prescription. The handwriting on the note is often indecipherable to us, but we are confident that the […]

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I’m Just Phubbing Around


Languages are living organisms that update themselves and keep themselves current with our new attitudes and life-styles. English in particular is very good at coming up with new terminology, allowing speakers to increase communication skills and always be “in the loop.” But when we combine our need to communicate with technology, results are not always the best. Even […]

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Translation and Intertextuality: The Importance of Reading between the Lines


We’ve already discussed how instances of intertextuality can be found in all texts, whether literary, political or otherwise, as well as in everyday conversations. By mentioning a quote from a book or a reference to a movie or commercial, every time we communicate we generate millions of connections and create a network of links that […]

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TV’s most blatant grammatical error and the future of translation technologies.

“To boldly go where no man has gone before.” Ouch! That split infinitive makes me cringe every time I hear it. And as a fanatic of the Star Trek franchise, I must have heard it over a thousand times. Couldn’t they have proofread the script before sending it in for recording? Did nobody notice? Anyway… […]

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You Had Me at “Hola”


We have already talked about both the importance and relevance of the minority’s vote in the upcoming election. We focused on the role of the Latino/Hispanic vote and how the Republican Party intended to attract them. Now, as promised, it’s time to have a go at the Democrats. While Republicans resorted to the use of […]

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Etymology: The DNA of Words


The word “etymology” comes from the Latin word “etymologĭa” and also the Greek word “ἐτυμολογία,” which is composed of “ἔτυμος étimos” (true sense”), and “λογία” (“the study of”). Therefore, etymology is the study of the meaning of words, or parts thereof. For example, Latin and Greek are two “heavyweights,” as they are the source of […]

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